Business, Psychology, Tech

Amazon Roulette

English: Amazon warehouse at Glenrothes

English: Amazon warehouse at Glenrothes (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When it comes to buying things that are non-essential I tend to follow my gut instinct and be patient, waiting for the best deal and usually I get a bargain.  Sometimes this is because I’ve waited for the thing to be replaced by “next year’s model” and is discounted in a local clearance store or on Amazon, but many of these bargains have been through the wonder that is Amazon WarehouseI don’t know if other countries have this but we do in Britain.

I’ve had a slightly dinged Acer Netbook for half-price, £35 worth of ring binders for £2.76 which had only had the box opened it appears and a souvenir London 2012 notebook which only had a slight mark on the spine for a couple of quid.  High-street shops have been selling these “shop-soiled seconds” for decades as many people won’t buy things at full price if the packaging or the product is slightly damaged, or has even been opened.  Amazon’s back-room though is a treasure trove and it’s given me a little game you can play.

The prices of everything on Amazon can vary and you can use “Your Browsing History” to keep track of stuff you want and watch the prices, including the Warehouse prices which come under the “Used” pricing.  Recently I’ve been watching Sony Bluray players and the three models that have built-in iPlayer etc have been up and down like the proverbial yo-yo in the Warehouse for weeks.  First the basic model was cheap, then it shot up for no good reason, then the mid-range did the same, then the best one suddenly dipped below the price the basic one had initially dropped to – less than half-price for one with “slight cosmetic damage”.  I clicked “buy” and deleted them all from my history so I don’t see if they went even lower – if you are of the masochistic or pessimistic nature however you could keep watching.

Bargain spotting, 21st century style.  Just remember, in shopping as in life, patience is everything.

Business, Marketing, Music, Society

But It’s a Bargain

The volume rocker of the Amazon Kindle 2

The volume rocker of the Amazon Kindle 2 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’ve just noticed on that the top five kindle books at the moment are all priced between £0.20 and £0.99.  Is this a coincidence or is it the same reason I also bought the number one book (besides it being a QI book) – only 20p, I’m having that!

I’m sure they’re all good books but it also shows that almost giving content away can give a book, or music, momentum in the sales charts.  It’s only really been possible thanks to digital media’s lower distribution costs and the benefit is that once people have tried it they’ll tell others about it and maybe they’ll still buy it even if it’s at a higher price later.

The music industry needs to pay attention.  It isn’t devaluing, it’s marketing.